Oualidia, Morocco’s Famous Oyster Capital

Taste Some of the World’s Best Oysters in Oualidia.

Oualidia, known as Morocco’s Oyster Capital, is also famous for its lagoon and shellfish farming. Since the 1950s, oysters have been cultivated by local producers. People from all over the world pass through this small fishing village to taste their popular and reputed uniquely flavored oysters. If you are planning to visit Ouildia, you can’t miss out on trying Oysters. Some people visit the village every two weeks just to eat oysters. The taste of the Oualidia oyster is special, but the prices are very reasonable for different types of consumers. 

The Production Process of Oysters

Each year, about 24 tons of juvenile old oysters (known as spat), that are about six months old, are imported from France. Then, they are placed on the breeding tables, where they undergo an immersion period for half a year in the local lagoon. After this, they are sorted as per their size and organized into bags or onto racks. In one rack, the producers hold 120 to 150 large oysters or 200 to 300 small oysters. In the case of shellfish, they are sat in the water for about three years, after which they are cleaned thoroughly using farm machines. 

After this, the oysters sit in large water basins for about 48 to 96 hours. During this time, they undergo the necessary filtering stage, which reassures the sterility of the oysters for safe consumption. It is through this process that the locally-produced oysters can gain their unique and famous flavor. As a result, Oualidia oysters have an exceptional quality and taste compared to other oysters available in Morocco. The reason behind this is the lagoon characteristics which include fertile soil, abundant minerals, and freshwater. Because of this, the oysters get a particular color and taste. 

The Oysters Market

After the shellfish have been through all the preparations, they are ready for consumption. About 40 tons of shellfish are exported abroad through shipping every year from Morocco. In addition, about 60 tons are kept for the domestic market.

Every season is a desirable time to visit Oualidia. Its stunning landscape and balanced climate make it a great all-around destination. If you visit during the summer season, you will experience a festive and friendly atmosphere with sunshine all day. During the later months, the village has warm and calming weather, and you can see tons of wildlife. As you breathe in the fresh air and get hungry, you can get a wide range of snacks from seafood vendors. You can either get some local food from stalls or coolers that are filled with fruits de mer.

There are not a lot of sophisticated restaurants in Oualidia. But, the village makes it up with its traditional, local, and authentic Moroccan experience. Some restaurants like the La Sultana or the Comptoir de la Lagune are worth every dinar. The best way to enjoy the dining experience is to take a walk along the beach and eat the fresh fish that is grilled on the sand. There are a lot of fishermen who put hot coals and grills in the sand to give you an authentic taste of the local food. 

Oualidia is a beautiful, quaint place that is known for its oysters. The flavor and color of oysters that you see here aren’t found anywhere else. So, if you are planning to visit this village, make sure that you fill up on oysters. 

Local Fresh Seafood Stand in Oualidia

Emma Born

The woman behind TheGastroMagazine, chief editor, food lover, polyglot, aviator and a globetrotter. Emma enjoys Moroccan, Spanish, Italian, Greek and Caribbean food a lot. Cheese & chocolate are her biggest addictions. However, she is really considering becoming Vegan one day.